Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My Flapper Was Leaking

The following story does not involve a urologist. It does, however involve a toilet.

I got hit with a water bill that was about fifty bucks more than usual and went to City Hall to check it out. They said I used ten-thousand gallons of water last month. I said that's crazy (that sounds like a whole swimming pool to me) and asked for someone to recheck my meter. Still waiting on that. The lady I spoke to said I might want to check for leaks.

I've known about a trickle in my toilet tank for a long time. It trickles from the tank into the bowl. But it seemed pretty innocuous. Yesterday I checked the meter several times and did some math. I'm letting over six-thousand gallons of water a month go down my toilet when I'm not using it! Holy cow!

I immediately went to Home Depot and replaced the flapper in the toilet tank. A six dollar solution. I'm horrified that I wasted so much water. Everybody, check your flappers. The strange thing is, I've known about the leak for a long time and yet my bill only went up last month. What's that about?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Vitamin D!

Firstly, congratulations to this year's Hugo winners!

Secondly, I've been tired since I hit puberty and it took many years for me to start believing that I wasn't just a lazy bastard, but something was physically wrong with me. I never knew what, though. I asked a doctor about it a few years back and she ordered lots of blood tests. With the results, she thought it might have something to do with my low testosterone levels (sorry ladies). She prescribed a patch which made me even more tired than usual. I quit about a week and a half into it when I realized I was sleeping through my entire vacation.

As I've stated, being back on the diet means no caffeine, which in turn means I'm dragging ass, even yesterday afternoon after sleeping nearly ten hours. I was complaining about this to some folks at work when one of our assistant managers said she and her son had the same problem and their doctor said it was a vitamin D deficiency. A bit of vitamin D straightened them out. At this point, I'm willing to try anything, so at lunch time I shot across the street to the supplement place and got some D. The difference is pretty amazing. I'm awake and alert! Even today with only four hours of sleep (due to work and watching Hugos and helping daughter with essays that she had all summer to do) I felt sharp for most of the day.

This could be the answer to a lot of my problems. I hope it doesn't wear off! if it continues it is certainly life changing and, damn, I wish I'd known about it twenty-five years ago.

P.S. I do drink milk and get a bit of Florida sun, but apparently that doesn't cut it.

Friday, August 19, 2011


Saw the new Conan today. It was a good try, but not quite Conany enough for me. I don't feel like I wasted my money though. It wasn't as good as the first film but way the hell better then the second. Also, it was pretty gorey.

The former wife points out that Conan's childhood in this new movie is much more in line with Howard's character than the first one. She prefers this one to the original because of that and because it has a lot more action. She agrees that this one was way the hell better than the second.

At any rate, if you're a Conan fan, you're probably going to check it out anyway, so really, the only advice we can give to anyone is (even though we both liked Grace Jones), if you haven't seen the second one, don't ever do so.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I'm all sleepy, what with no caffeine and getting up early for days. I'm getting no writing done. I'm just throwing a video that I dig on here for tonight. Enjoy.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Sawgrass Mills 1

I took my daughter to see Cirque du Soleil (Alegria) a few weeks back for her birthday and decided to show her Sawgrass Mills, a huge-ass outlet mall in Sunrise, Florida (west of Ft. Lauderdale). Here's the floor plan. My daughter hadn't been there since she was two years old. I took a bunch of pics because I'm a hick who doesn't get out much but I keep putting off posting them because there are too many to mess with at once. So I'll just show two or three at a time.

How could I possibly pass up a picture of a store with a name like this?

Here are a couple of pics from a candy store whose name I forget and can't find on that shitty floor plan above. I didn't quite capture the entire store.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Let's Try This Again

Welcome, new follower, Snard! (and I've been calling him Mike all this time)

With the terrible news that science fiction author Colin Harvey died of a stroke yesterday and the scale telling me that I've regained twenty of the thirty-five pounds that I lost last year, I have decided to get healthier once more. I originally lost the weight to prevent my own stroke. My blood pressure, among other things, was way too high. After I lost the weight, I had the misfortune of having my doctor tell me that I was in good shape. That's when I began to slide.

Part of the slide was anticipated. I looked at my writing goals at the beginning of this year and realized I would lose ground if I was going to get things done. While I'm losing the weight, you see, I forgo caffeine, take in less calories and exercise and so I'm tired as hell. I have a different situation this year though. For one and two, I've discovered the power of freewriting and the kanban board. The other thing is last year I was taking care of my old and sick dog. She took a lot of time and woke me up multiple times each night. So, who knows, I may be able to get back into the slightly less lumpy shape I was in and also get some writing and podcasting done.

Sure hope so.

Monday, August 15, 2011

134, Mango And The Wisdom Of Rest

Hooray! Story 134 of The One-Thousand is finally out the door! That's the novella and it took two months. That only makes three stories for the year so far, which is stinky-pie, but I hope to concentrate more on short stories for the rest of the year, only giving the novel in progress about a page a day.

The latest episode of Beware the Hairy Mango has popped into existence and is eagerly awaiting your aural perusal. Easy as Cake! Listen here: http://bewarethehairymango.com/episode-84-easy-as-cake/

The original plan at this point was to write for a couple of hours even if was just freewriting, but I only slept about three hours last night and even getting an hour and a half more after work, I'm not at my best. Not that I couldn't do it, but since I have to get up in five hours, it's wiser to rest and be better for tomorrow. I always wanted to be one of those good people who wrote every day (fiction, I mean), but now I understand with work, family and life, it's okay to sacrifice a couple of days a week to the betterment of the other five. let me stop now before I spend more time not sleeping. Bye!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Mates of State

Mates of State turned out to be the soundtrack for the writing of my novella. I eventually added some Zero 7 and Sade, but Mates of State was at the heart of it. It got to the point that when I heard their song, Now, it would put me right into the world I was writing about. That's a powerful thing when you have to produce words. I can't find a decent video for Now, so here's what might be my second favorite song from Mates of State, My Only Offer. Maybe you'll dig it.


Saturday, August 13, 2011


The Done-ish Horror!

My novella is done and I was about to send it out when I remembered that I told my beta-readers they had until the 15th to get back to me with any issues, so I figured I'd better wait. At least out of courtesy, because I received loads of great feedback from people who got back to me early. Of course, if one of my procrastinators points out a new and important problem, I'll be very happy that I didn't ship the thing out just yet.

I've spent most of the last eight hours fooling with the thing and now I think it's time to get out of the house.


Friday, August 12, 2011

I Suck At Blogging

I'm saying it for my sake because you already know. It's exactly like alcoholism. EXACTLY!

Anyway, I'm starting to burn out on the social networks, and I really should be here more. I'm not going to say I'll try to do better, because I've lied to you enough in the past. I've broken too many promises. I'm exactly like a deadbeat dad.

Right now, I'm working on finishing up the fifth draft of my novella. This is the draft where I try to fix the things that my beta readers complained about where I can see that they might have a point. There are plenty of things I don't agree with and you don't want to try to please everybody, or else you get a shitty story. I don't like shitty stories.